Saturday, October 20, 2012

Knocked Off

So, this morning I got an email from the lovely Lilli at Frocks and Frou Frou.  She was shopping around Modcloth and came upon this....

Click here to go see the actual page

...and asked me if I was selling my skirts on Modcloth.

It sure looks a lot like this skirt that I have made in the past...

It looks like, and is, a cheaper version of the skirt that make my living off of.  It's made of polyester instead of wool and cotton and sells for $30 less than mine.  It is most likely being made in a sweatshop in a third world country by people being paid unfair wages.  That makes me feel a little icky.

Should I be flattered that I've been copied?  Or should I be mad that someone is making money off of my design?  Or do I pretend that it didn't happen?  I know you cannot copyright clothing, but it just seems wrong for someone to do this.

Can anyone weigh in on this?  I don't know what to do.  I did write Modcloth and let them know with photos as proof.


  1. Oh that stinks :(
    Yours looks much nicer, if that's any consolation.
    I hope they take it down, it just seems crummy even if you can't copyright clothing.

  2. Oh geez, that really sucks. I have no idea what to do in a situation like that.

  3. Hey Loni. It's very, very, VERY uncool and I thoroughly recommend you take it up with Modcloth. If the skirt has been "designed" in-house, then they ought to be held accountable. If it's an item they've bought from an external source, then I would have thought they had a duty of care to make sure it's an original design and not a rip-off. A similar thing happened to a friend of mine & I've emailed her to ask what process she went through to sort the issue out. If she knows anything helpful I'll let you know.
    In the meanwhile, if you can't get an appropriate response from Modcloth I'd encourage you to go online with it. Jezebel, XOJane, HuffPo, and obviously YouThoughtWeWouldntNotice. It's not OK for big corporations to ride on the backs of independent designers, and the social media machine is proving effective at stamping it out (on a one-on-one basis, anyway).
    I'll certainly be letting MY readers know not to buy it from Modcloth, and to visit LoveToLoveYou instead.
    Good luck!

  4. Hi Loni,

    That really is awful, and certainly against the law. That skirt is your original design and intellectual property.

    At the very least, you should take it to the Twitter court! Here are some good precedents for you with good outcomes: + +

    Happens all the time, sadly. Good luck.